Merida, Yucatan Peninsula – Too many to see

Merida

 

Merida, the capital of the Yucatan peninsula, was one of the largest cities I have visited. Merida was the only city to be elected twice as the American Capital of Culture. In January 2019, the Merida Festival was celebrating its 477th anniversary and many events were held in the city. When I came on Thursday, January 10th, I went to see Serenatas Yucatecas in Santa Lucia Park. The show always takes place in this park every Thursday since 1965.

 

And the little dancers, who learn this traditional dance at a very young age.

 

In the fest I also had a chance to see Cirque Alfonse’s “Tabarnak” show. It was open to public and after waiting in the line about an hour, we were taken in, and I found a place in a loca ✌️

 

Peon Contreras Theather

 

There are a lot to do in Merida.

One of the sites that can be viewed for the current program is

https://yucatanliving.com/calendar

Every evening there is an event. Video mapping on the walls of San Ildefonso Cathedral is Friday evening program. Here is the video:

 

And there are beautiful towns to visit around the city. I visited Izamal, Progreso and Celestun.

Izamal

A beautiful yellow city. It is about 1.5 hours way from Merida by bus. I like it very much. On the plaza in front of the chuch, at the far left corner were houses and 2 senoras were sitting and chatting. I joined them and asked why the city painted in yellow. She said it was the decision taken many ago by the municipal. It was really nice to see this unique city.

 

 

 

 

 

Progreso

The next day I went to Progreso to see El Corchito – Reserva Ecológica. I saw 3 mini cenotes, also raccoons, coatis, birds, turtles. After buying the ticket (35 pesos) and leaving all the food I had in my bag into a box with my name on (otherwise they told me I would see the raccoons jumped on my bag), I passed accross the river by a motor boat in 2 minutes to the entrance of the lagoon.

If you are here on a hot day like me and the sea side is also very windy this place is great to cool off.

 

 

 

Celestun

 

And I went to Celestun to see the flamingos. The 90-kilometer road took 2.5 hours with this Oriente bus. These buses that run between the cities are named as 2nd class, just like colectivos they stopd very often and people get on and off. I didn’t mind it because it made me see these small towns, but it was always very cold. It is not possible to wear shorts and t-shirts, but it is always good to wear long-sleeved t-shirts and trousers and even a shawl. 

There are boats to go to the flamingos, and I met Sophie and Tam when I was looking for them. They came to Yucatan for 2 weeks and rented a car. I read on the internet that it would be good to have at least 2 people in terms of cost. Not because of the cost but as being one person, I didnt dare it. But I would definitely recommend it. Rent a car if you plan to see Yucatan and Quintana Roo. It is very convenient for driving 2 states. And maybe Campeche too. Because this part of the country is safe, and are many tourists and therefore it is possible to rent a car. But I wouldn’t recommend to rent in Chiapas at all, even if it was possible.

We did a very nice boat trip to flamingos, but again, not close enough.

 

I stayed in Merida for a week. The first 4 days I stayed at the hotel Paseo de Montejo. It was difficult to sleep because of loud loud music until 2 in the night. (Could have been due to the festival). I was satisfied with the hotel, but the voices … I decided to move to a hotel in the center, it was good, also shortened my walks in the city.

 

Next, Valladolid, the other Yucatan city…

January 16, 2019 ✌️😎

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